For most law firms, paid search or pay-per-click (PPC) through search engines is their preferred digital marketing strategy. In fact, 70% of companies would rather run a PPC campaign than search engine optimization (SEO) even though SEO is generally low-cost or even free, mainly because of how fast PPC gets results. With law firm PPC, you can feel immediate effects the moment your ads are up.
Paid search is run by purchasing advertisements on keywords on different search engines. What determines the cost of the ad is the search engine, the number of clicks the ad generates, and the competition around that particular keyword. You can expect general, broad match keywords like “US law firm”, “US attorney”, or “United States legal services” on Google to be more expensive compared to longer and particular ones like “pro bono legal services for civil law in Denver Colorado” on smaller search engines like Bing.
Another reason why paid search is so favored is that it’s a tried-and-trusted method. When used effectively, it can get you an excellent ROI. However, it’s equally likely that poor business decisions can cause you to sink thousands of dollars in an ineffective law firm PPC marketing strategy. If you want to succeed, you need to use all the data and information at your disposal to come up with a scheme that maximizes conversion.
Best PPC practices for law firms
There’s a lot that goes into paid search rather than just playing highest bidder. What determines success in PPC isn’t how much money you throw at the search engine, but how you use that money. Other decisive factors, like effective landing pages and optimized websites, also play a part. If you’re interested in learning about the secret to PPC triumph, here are a few tips for you.
- Define your goals
It is crucial in any campaign that you clearly lay out your goals. Be specific and realistic. What numbers are you aiming for? What metrics are you targeting? As a law firm, you would want increased brand awareness and increased conversion rates. If you have previous PPC campaign data to look back on, use it as your bottom line. If your previous campaign generated 10,000 site visitors in 30 days, double that for your upcoming campaign. You’re expected to improve since you would have learned valuable lessons from your previous campaign, but don’t aim too high. The key to consistency is giving yourself attainable goals. If you continuously set yourself up for failure, you’ll only get discouraged and burned out.
- Decide on a budget
A good way to avoid falling into the pitfall of overspending is by setting a budget. To determine what’s a reasonable range, take your present goals and data from previous PPC campaigns. Use key figures to estimate your projected cost. If your goal is 20,000 site visitors and your average cost per click in the previous campaign was $0.66, your expected median is $13,200. You can then create a margin of ±$5,000 around that value to determine your budget range. If you don’t have previous PPC data to use as a basis, you can consult with a PPC agency to set up a budget for your firm.
- Target the right keywords
Once you have your goals and budget, the next step is to start putting together your PPC campaign. One of the key aspects of paid search is knowing what keywords you’ll put your ads under. As mentioned earlier, broad keywords are expected to be more expensive, thanks to the competition surrounding these terms. However, the good news is that you won’t even need these terms. What generates relevant traffic to a law firm are precise keywords that include your services and location. If you’re a Los Angeles-based firm, target “law firm Los Angeles”. If you have certain specializations like corporate law, target longer keywords like “legal services company registration Los Angeles”. These keywords are less competitive and cost less, but you can be sure that the people conducting these searches are the ones who are specifically looking for your firm.
- Use eye-catching headlines and appropriate calls to action
Paid search ads don’t benefit from flashy features and bright colors like normal website ads. Instead, grab the user’s attention by including words that pique client interest, like free consultation or works on contingency. Use headlines that include the keywords the ad can be found under.
- Prime your landing pages and website for maximum conversion
Getting users to click your ads is only the beginning. The most important step actually occurs on the landing page of your ad. Make the prospective client an offer they can’t refuse, like a limited-time offer for a free consultation. Use calls to action like call now or book now to coax the visitor into taking action. Your website should also be easy to navigate and have all the necessary information your client needs to make an informed decision about hiring your firm. Include your address, contact details, case history, attorney profiles, client testimonials, and so on. Ensure that your website is always up and loads quickly. Anytime your website is down could mean the loss of a potential client.
- Monitor your KPIs
You need to monitor your metrics to confirm if your campaign is meeting expectations. Early adjustments based on ad data can often save you money and jumpstart a weak campaign. Data is crucial in making sound marketing decisions, so gather what’s needed and discuss how you can improve. There are many analytics tools available online, with different features and user interfaces. You don’t have to pay for the most expensive tool. Just select one that measures all the metrics you need.
If all else fails, don’t hesitate to hire a law firm PPC agency. These companies have the necessary expertise and skills to build a PPC strategy suitable for your law firm and give you valuable insight into your overall marketing strategy. If you work with experts and do ample research, you should avoid all the rookie—and costly—mistakes in PPC strategizing.